Meet Odette Umurerwa

19 Jul

Each day, until July 23rd, we will be introducing you to one of our current Entrepreneur Training for Success students. These women are artists, artisans and creative entrepreneurs with talent, passion, vision and entrepreneurial drive to start-up their own businesses and lead change in their communities. Read about the amazing work they are doing and join us on July 23rd as we celebrate their graduation.

Odette Speaking sharing her story at our Donor Reception event in June

Odette Umurerwa, a mother of two, was born in a refugee camp in Uganda, the daughter of Rwandan parents fleeing violence in the region. From a young age Odette has had a natural talent as a community organizer and entrepreneur.  At the age of 7, Odette and her brother created a cooperative in their refugee camp.  Along with other children in their community, they started to sell eggs from the chickens they owned, allowing them to buy more chickens, clothes, books, and pay the fees for their friends to go to school.  Based on this experience, Odette wrote a book called Learning to Help Ourselves and Others.

Odette joined EWI’s Entrepreneur Training for Success with two purposes: (1) to develop a food business and (2) empower other immigrant and refugee women and girls to reach for the stars. While in training, Odette developed a business plan to offer Rwandan cooking classes and catering for anniversaries, birthday parties, intimate dinners, and special events. She also plans to explore opportunities to sell her food at cultural festivals and later on own a food truck.

Odette’s passion for cooking stems from her belief that cooking brings people together, something she finds joy in doing.  Odette’s ultimate goal is to lead by example, and empower girls around the world to succeed in school and conquer the challenges they face in life.

RSVP for the graduation gala, Women Architects of Change.


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